Friday, August 10, 2012

Court reviews a worker's compensation case involving a fraud upon the court

CHEYENNE DUFFER v. KEYSTOPS, LLC. (Tenn. Ct. App. August 1, 2012)

This appeal arises out of a personal injury suit, wherein the plaintiff and Dewayne Duffer filed suit against a trucking company for injuries suffered in an accident and for loss of consortium as a result of the accident. Plaintiff’s employer intervened to recover worker’s compensation benefits paid to plaintiff.

Soon thereafter, the trucking company discovered that plaintiff was male, had filed the action using an assumed female identity, and had lied throughout the discovery process. The trucking company filed a motion for summary judgment.

The court granted the motion and dismissed plaintiff’s and employer’s complaints, finding that plaintiff had committed a fraud upon the court and that employer had failed to file suit within the applicable statute of limitations because plaintiff’s complaint was rendered void ab initio. Plaintiff and employer appeal. We affirm the dismissal of plaintiff’s complaint but reverse the dismissal of employer’s complaint.

Opinion available at:

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